Yaama is the Awabakal word for ‘welcome’ and is a process of five sessions involving the children visiting the school, participating in classes and playground activities, while their parents have the opportunity to socialise and meet new parents and explore issues that impact student learning at school.
At St Paul’s, we aim to ensure the transition into Kindergarten is a smooth and positive experience for all students. If we can minimise ‘settling in’ time at the beginning of Kindergarten, we can focus on the importance of learning.
Having the children visit the school five times, spending time in the classroom and on the playground, means they are very familiar with our school environment and school culture.
Staff also conduct information sessions for parents to learn vital information about school readiness. During the Kinder Yaama sessions, parents have spent time exploring how they can help their children’s numeracy skills through playing board games and other activities.
The first parent session was facilitated by CSO Speech Therapist, Donna Crow, who led a discussion about early reading skills. In future sessions, the parents will learn about mental health, behaviour management and the daily procedures at school. They will also join their child in the Kinder classroom for one session to see how their child interacts in a ‘big school’ setting.
There has been very positive feedback from parents who have engaged during the program with many of the children not wanting to go home at the end of each session!
The new Kinders also have the opportunity to meet their Year 6 buddies prior to starting school to ensure that they have at least one special friend on arrival to school.
Each year, St Paul’s ensures the new Kinders are well and truly a part of the school community prior to their official first day of school.
For more information about enrolling your child in 2018, visit the CSO website.